Smart Grid News and Analysis


IHS Ranks Tollgrade as Smart Grid Sensor Market Share Leader


Tollgrade Communications, Inc., the industry leader in redefining the global standard for reliability at the world’s largest electric utilities and telecommunications providers, announced today that an IHS Report ranks the company as the number one supplier of Smart Grid Sensors in the world. IHS, one of the first analyst firms to track Smart Grid Sensors as a stand-alone category in the Distribution Automation (DA) market, predicts that by 2021 demand for new Smart Grid Sensor technology will grow 1,200% making it one of the fastest growing segments in DA and allowing it to surpass its earliest predecessor, non-communicating Fault Current Indicator (FCI) sensor technology. Tollgrade also earned number one market share in the North America region where IHS projects the highest growth due to the extreme pressures of weather systems, aging infrastructure and declining operation budgets causing utilities to adopt Smart Grid Sensors more widely, quickly.

“IHS has estimated Tollgrade as the leading supplier of Smart Grid Sensors in the world by unit shipments,” said Fizza Arshad IHS Smart Utility Infrastructure analyst. “In addition, Tollgrade is actively engaged in predictive analytics which we believe is beginning to taking hold in the market. When Smart Grid Sensors are combined with this level of analytics, utilities can better predict future outages and grid equipment that is about to fail, thereby improving a utility’s logistics and operational savings.”

“Tollgrade Smart Grid Sensors are a low-risk, shovel-ready technology that allow utilities to respond more effectively to outages caused by extreme weather or failing grid infrastructure. Our sensors can be safely deployed in minutes on live utility lines,” said Edward H. Kennedy, President and CEO, Tollgrade Communications, Inc. “Once installed, the technology improves a utility’s operational expenses by reducing the number of trips crews must take to make repairs. With the real-time information provided by our Predictive Grid® Analytics software, utilities can positively change the way they communicate outage information to their customers.”

This past winter, Tollgrade’s Smart Grid Sensors played an important role in combating outages at a number of utilities. In one example, a northeastern utility had to respond to an outage in six feet of snow where roads were impassable. When power was lost, Tollgrade Smart Grid Sensors reported the outage impacting 6,000 residents in less than two minutes. By pinpointing the outage to the exact switching location, the crews were able to restore power in about five hours. Without sensors, it is estimated those 6,000 residents would have been sitting in the dark for 20 hours or more with six feet of snow at their doorsteps. In a second example highlighting the prediction of failing equipment within the grid’s aging infrastructure, Tollgrade’s Smart Grid Sensors reported trouble at a voltage regulator that had ruptured. Because of the early notification, the crew was able to get to the failing equipment before it caused a fault which would have interrupted power to about 2,000 customers for three hours causing a total 360,000 Customer Minutes Interrupted (CMI).

For more information on the market for Smart Grid Sensors, see the IHS report “The World Market for Smart Grid Sensors – 2015” which is available for purchase at their website. To learn more about how Tollgrade is helping utilities prevent outages download the Predictive Grid Quarterly Report which is the first industry benchmark available to educate utilities and policy makers on the importance of taking proactive measures to prevent outages with this advanced type of sensor technology.